On Piers Morgan’s Tuesday CNN program, Harvard Law Professor Alan Dershowitz said his former pupil, Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, is bright and ethical but short on strategic thinking.
Dershowitz praised Cruz much as he has in past as being a smart, principled student, and noted that his commitment to principle is on show in Cruz’ push to defund Obamacare by using Congress’ power of the purse. But he said this time Cruz is not being tactical or strategic.
“I think he deeply believes what he’s doing,” Dershowitz said. “I don’t think of him so much as a tactical or strategic thinker. He’s deeply principled. He thinks he’s doing the right thing. That doesn’t mean it’s the right thing. And he’s very hard to get off that principled argument. I saw that years ago when he was a student. He was not a compromiser. He was not somebody who tried to make friends by accepting what was then the political correctness of the day. If you want to defeat Ted Cruz, you have to appeal to his principles not to his tactics.”
However, Dershowitz, author of the recently released book “Taking the Stand: My Life in the Law,” suggested an argument might be made against Cruz’s position and the tactic he is using to advance his cause.
“[I] think it raises very serious constitutional questions of the kind that Ted Cruz should be interested in,” Dershowitz said. “Could you imagine Hamilton and Madison sitting around and drafting the Constitution and The Federalist Papers? They’re talking about how the government has to pay its debts, how it has to secure the credit of the United States, how the House of Representatives has to originate bills on revenue. Nobody in a million years would have contemplated the power of Congress to shut down the government, to create doubts about our creditworthiness. I think you can make a very strong argument that what Ted Cruz is doing is deeply unconstitutional. Whether a court would accept that or say it’s a political question is another issue. But Cruz is a principled man. He ought to look at the Constitution and look into his heart and ask himself, ‘What would Alexander Hamilton have done?’”